Brandon Ingram is projected to go No. 2 to the Los Angeles Lakers in next week’s NBA Draft. The 18-year-old Duke forward won over a lot of Lakers officials when he worked out for the Purple & Gold last Thursday
Ingram would be joining a young roster headlined by last year’s No. 2 pick, D’Angelo Russell, Julius Randle, Jordan Clarkson and Larry Nance Jr. Add to that, the Lakers will be coached by Luke Walton, the youngest head coach in the league.
On Wednesday, Ingram was grilled by popular analyst Skip Bayless on ESPN First Take. When asked if he “would be good being a Los Angeles Laker,” Ingram said: “If I fall second, I’m just happy to be drafted. Of course, it’s L.A. and I’ve had a chance to go in and meet my new (possible) teammates. It’s a great organization. If I land there, I’d be happy,” said the 6-foot-9 sharpshooting wing.
Brandon Ingram: ‘I’m stronger than people think’
According to Ingram, he is worthy of being a No. 1 pick. “I think I have high character. I have a mental toughness about myself. I have something that other guys don’t. When you look at my body type, you see all these weaknesses, but I’m actually stronger than people think,” he said.
A few critics have questioned Ingram’s NBA readiness due to his slender body type and lack of upper body strength. Will he be able to hang with the big boys in pro basketball? “When I started college, I weighed 169. When I left college, I was 192 pounds. Right now, I am 197. Before I enter the NBA, I’m hoping to weigh 210 pounds.”
After working out with the Lakers last Thursday, Ingram arrived in Philadelphia Sunday night and reportedly dined with Joel Embiid, Brown and Sixers executives. On Monday morning, he put on “a show” for them in a private workout session which was also witnessed by players Embiid, Jahlil Okafor, Robert Covington, Christian Wood, and Nik Stauskas.
Brandon Ingram could enter the NBA at 6-foot-9 and 210 pounds. That’s not too shabby for a teenager with a 7-5 wingspan. It’s not a foregone conclusion that Sixers draft Ben Simmons No. 1 overall.